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VCS/2600 Game Rarity by Number of Known Copies


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#1 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:56 PM

Inspired by the recent discovery of a 5th(!) Extra Terrestrials cart, I wanted to put together a quick list of all of the R10/top tier rarest carts arranged by the number of publicly known copies. I greatly look forward to hearing from those who know far better than I here about more exact figures, and certainly about the estimated number of copies for games that are usually among those featured on all of the "rarest Atari games" lists. What I have off the top of my head and from quick searches:

 

 

1x copy: Gamma Attack, Red Sea Crossing, Cat Trax (was this real?)

2x copies: Birthday Mania, monogrammed Space Chase

3x copies: Ultravision Karate

4x copies:

5x copies: Extra Terrestrials

6x copies: Gauntlet

 

15x copies: Eli's Ladder

 

23x copies: Magicard

 

28x copies: Pepsi Invaders

 

and with a surprising amount of copies apparently out there, around 20x copies of Air Raid known.


Edited by Blazing Lazers, Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:19 PM.


#2 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:00 PM

1x copy: Gamma Attack, Red Sea Crossing, Cat Trax (was this real?)

 

Yes, there is only one copy of Cat Trax out there, a prototype I personally owned (along with prototypes of Pleiades and Funky Fish) some time ago.  Long since sold to another collector.

 

 ..Al



#3 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:09 PM

 

Yes, there is only one copy of Cat Trax out there, a prototype I personally owned (along with prototypes of Pleiades and Funky Fish) some time ago.  Long since sold to another collector.

 

 ..Al

Thank you so much for confirming that! :)

 

I knew I'd heard something like that some time ago, and had seen images of a box and such. There was a repro too, wasn't there? The old AtariGuide site had a copy available that I wish I'd pulled the trigger on:

 

https://web.archive....com/37/3759.htm



#4 Albert OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:18 PM

Thank you so much for confirming that! :)

 

I knew I'd heard something like that some time ago, and had seen images of a box and such. There was a repro too, wasn't there? The old AtariGuide site had a copy available that I wish I'd pulled the trigger on:

 

https://web.archive....com/37/3759.htm

 

We still have boxed copies of the three "UA" games available..  There aren't a ton of boxes left at this point, though.

 

https://atariage.com...oduct_list&c=47

 

 ..Al



#5 lazzeri OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:36 PM

   I think some numbers are off. Feel free to correct me if i´m mistaken:

 

- There´s only one Birthday Mania

- Gamma Attack is complicated... :-) One was found in the wild by Anthony DeNardo. Then the game author surfaced and sold "the other copy he had" but it was different from the one already known. So it can be only one copy back in the day or two copies. Really weird scenario.

- There were two Red Sea Crossing, they were on sale at the same time.

 

Apparently there´s a few more Ultravision Karate. http://atariage.com/...te#entry2174459



#6 BONEMAN OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 4:34 AM

Thanks for starting this thread. I was going to but I'm too lazy. Does anyone know exactly how many of the following games are believed to exist?

Karate
Gauntlet
Eli's Ladder
Magicard

#7 high voltage OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 5:11 AM

How about this gray box with colour picture title?

 

hangman_silver_cart_2.jpg

 

 

Only seen it once:

 

normal_Picture_006.jpg


Edited by high voltage, Mon Aug 20, 2018 5:12 AM.


#8 yanbu OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:05 AM

There's currently a Birthday Mania cart (shell only) on ebay right now, not sure if it's the real deal or if it even counts if there isn't anything inside?

 

https://www.ebay.com...sAAAOSw2sZbUI2V


Edited by yanbu, Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:35 AM.


#9 Rom Hunter OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:23 AM

Thank you so much for confirming that! :)

 

I knew I'd heard something like that some time ago, and had seen images of a box and such. There was a repro too, wasn't there? The old AtariGuide site had a copy available that I wish I'd pulled the trigger on:

 

https://web.archive....com/37/3759.htm

 

Here's Cat Trax:
http://www.atarimani...trax_17181.html

The golden box is not a reproduction.

8)
 


Edited by Rom Hunter, Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:23 AM.


#10 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:27 AM

 

Here's Cat Trax:
http://www.atarimani...trax_17181.html

The golden box is not a reproduction.

8)
 

 

I love how they were just going to reuse the Arcadia box and label, just with a different color . Waste not want not I guess. :)



#11 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 10:06 AM

Here's Cat Trax:http://www.atarimani...trax_17181.html
The golden box is not a reproduction. 8)


That is awesome! If you know, what's the story behind that box and its discovery? I'd have to think more must've existed...

#12 lazzeri OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 11:49 AM

 
Here's Cat Trax:
http://www.atarimani...trax_17181.html

The golden box is not a reproduction.

8)
 


I tend to believe this is a pre-production sample.

Its really odd that no loose game ever appeared but only a complete one.

#13 Rom Hunter OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 12:03 PM

I tend to believe this is a pre-production sample.

Its really odd that no loose game ever appeared but only a complete one.

Well, for a pre-production sample it's pretty complete.

Also, would they print only one manual, label and box?

8)



#14 lazzeri OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 12:08 PM

That happens. Best example is Bingo for the RCA Studio.

#15 Kosmic Stardust OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 12:25 PM

rarest game i own is bumper bash, r9 according to aa. i also have repros of pepsi invaders and red sea crossing. pepsi from aa and the red sea was purchased from a scammer for $700. the buyer got reimbused and was told by ebay to destroy the counterfeit. i jokingly offered him $25 shipped and he accepted. so i payed up and have a boot with history behind it... :P

#16 Foxsolo2000 OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:45 PM

   I think some numbers are off. Feel free to correct me if i´m mistaken:

 

- There´s only one Birthday Mania

- Gamma Attack is complicated... :-) One was found in the wild by Anthony DeNardo. Then the game author surfaced and sold "the other copy he had" but it was different from the one already known. So it can be only one copy back in the day or two copies. Really weird scenario.

- There were two Red Sea Crossing, they were on sale at the same time.

 

Apparently there´s a few more Ultravision Karate. http://atariage.com/...te#entry2174459

How different was the 2nd Gamma Attack to the one Shaun and Phantom found?  Was it ever downloaded and released?



#17 Ballblaɀer OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 6:36 PM

If one counts label variants (some people won't want to, of course -- I get that) then the Atari Inc. 1978 picture label Flag Capture is right up there as well, with three known copies. I've got one, Supergun's got one, and I'm not sure where the third one ended up.

 

On a related note, does anyone have a current count, or at least a good estimate, of existing Sears Superman picture labels in collectors' hands? I want to say that it's in the 10-15 range but... I don't remember why I have that number in my head. icon_razz.gif



#18 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 6:55 PM

So, bit of an updated tally:

 

1x copy: Cat Trax, Birthday Mania (only one copy seems to be confirmed)

2x copies:  monogrammed Space Chase, Red Sea Crossing, Gamma Attack (possibly 2 slightly different copies)

3x copies: Ultravision Karate

4x copies:

5x copies: Extra Terrestrials (also, one prototype version)

6x copies: Gauntlet

 

15x copies: Eli's Ladder

 

20+ copies: Air Raid

 

23x copies: Magicard

 

28x copies: Pepsi Invaders



#19 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:19 PM

Well, for a pre-production sample it's pretty complete.

Also, would they print only one manual, label and box?

8)

 

Only one? Highly unlikely. But beyond that, very, very few. It would not at all surprise me if the one copy depicted on Atarimania is the only surviving one. It might well be possible to discover more if somebody were to dig through the surviving documents of UA, Ltd. I've heard anecdotes that some records do indeed exist still.

 

Still, given just how rare some Arcadia games are, and how scattered UA's distribution was, I absolutely consider it possible that a few 2600 copies of Cat Trax could have been made and sold somewhere in the world. Looking at those images of the one box makes me sure that others had to have existed. And it does amuse me to think that the commonest Arcadia game could also be the rarest Atari game!

 

That happens. Best example is Bingo for the RCA Studio.

 Yeah, it did happen. To what extent is anybody's guess. The exact status of Bingo is still uncertain, even after years of digging into it. Pre-production sample is simply my own conclusion based on what the bulk of the evidence suggests to me. If nothing else, it makes the most practical sense.



#20 Rom Hunter OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:04 AM

So, bit of an updated tally:

 

1x copy: Cat Trax, Birthday Mania (only one copy seems to be confirmed)

2x copies:  monogrammed Space Chase, Red Sea Crossing, Gamma Attack (possibly 2 slightly different copies)

3x copies: Ultravision Karate

4x copies:

5x copies: Extra Terrestrials (also, one prototype version)

6x copies: Gauntlet

 

15x copies: Eli's Ladder

 

20+ copies: Air Raid

 

23x copies: Magicard

 

28x copies: Pepsi Invaders

 

Are we going to add holy grail PAL originals too?

If so:
http://www.atarimani...ity=10&step=200

Only one (two at most) found of each.

8)


Edited by Rom Hunter, Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:04 AM.


#21 Schitti OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 21, 2018 5:02 AM

 

Are we going to add holy grail PAL originals too?
 

 

Of course!



#22 tpugmire OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 22, 2018 3:32 AM

On the Magicard numbers, are you figuring in all three variants? (Two label variations, and the bare pcb version.)

#23 Mayhem OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 22, 2018 5:34 AM

Based on comments in the ET thread, there's three copies of Red Sea Crossing.

 

Gauntlet is a bit hard to judge, because there are boards and chips (no cases) out there as well, someone found a supply of the chips iirc. I bought one back at the time, although it has since been sold.

 

Isn't the run on Video Life something like 20 odd as well?



#24 Zwackery OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 22, 2018 7:37 AM

These are very rare, but not single or even double digit IMHO (in terms of production run, not sure how many are left on Planet Earth).

 

How about this gray box with colour picture title?

 

hangman_silver_cart_2.jpg

 

 

Only seen it once:

 

normal_Picture_006.jpg



#25 jeremiahjt ONLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 22, 2018 9:59 PM

In the now-locked Extra Terrestrials thread it was said that there are seven known copies.  The three in the museum (assuming the prototype was included), the lady in Hamilton, the recently discovered genesis of that thread, and Wonder007's just revealed copy make six copies.  Wonder007 also stated that two people have offered to sell him a copy.  Could that be the seventh copy and one of the aforementioned copies, maybe the lady in Hamilton?  Or would that make seven not including the prototype?






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